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Duke Med Alumni News, Winter 2021

Alumni Spotlight: Claire Aldridge, PhD’96

Before Claire Aldridge, PhD’96, and her husband, Matt Burnside, took their daughter on a long-planned spring break trip to New York City, she checked travel guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and by the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, where she is associate vice president of commercialization and business development. The focus at the time was on surface transmission of the novel coronavirus: avoid touching doorknobs, wash your hands frequently, and don’t touch your face.

Heeding the Call: Dismantling Racism

'Say their names.' That’s the call made by many in reference to the numerous Black people who have been killed by police or civilian vigilantes in this country. It’s a call that some say represents the long-overdue need to address systemic racism in the U.S. And it’s a call that many students, faculty, and staff say must include Duke University School of Medicine. 

A Seat at the Table

In his nearly nine years working at Duke, Lowell Tyler says there have been countless times when he’s been the only Black person or Black man in the room. It can be a bit of a challenge, and even though it’s a situation he has gotten accustomed to, he says it’s one that can—and should—change.

A Lifelong Commitment to Duke and Women’s Health Care

Growing up on a large farm near Toccoa, Georgia, Winnifred Allen “Al” Addison, AB’56, MD’60, HS’60-’65, HS’71-’72, P’83, GP’14, GP’18, was interested in anatomy from a very early age. He dissected a stillborn calf at his farm when he was just 13 years old. “I wanted to see what the inside of an animal looked like,” says Addison, the Walter L. Thomas Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

Giving Back to the Next Generation of Duke Cardiologists

In 1972, when William H. Spencer III, AB’61, MD’65, HS’69-’72, P’89, P’89, P’89,’93, completed his fellowship in cardiology at Duke University Medical Center and headed to work in a private practice in Houston, Texas, his mentors cautioned him about the new career path he was about to start.

“Before I left Duke, they said to me, ‘You can’t make a living doing heart catheterizations,’” says Spencer, professor emeritus of cardiology at the Medical University of South Carolina. “It turned out to be the opposite.”

Remembering a Founding Father of the Field of Free Radicals

Biochemist Irwin Fridovich, the James B. Duke Professor Emeritus of Medicine and a familiar figure on the Duke campus for more than 60 years, died on November 2, 2019, at the age of 90. Fridovich was internationally known for his work on the body’s responses to “free radicals,” dangerously corrosive oxygen molecules that would cause serious damage to tissues if left unchecked.

After 45 Years, Devoted Duke Medical Alumnus Reunites with Pilot Whose Arm He Saved

As an Air Force surgeon stationed at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, during the height of the Vietnam War, Robert Green, AB’56, MD’60, saw a lot of badly injured servicemen cross his operating table. But one of them in particular stuck with him, a wounded young pilot whose journey from the skies over North Vietnam to Dayton was especially remarkable.

A Tribute to a Duke Great: Frederic M. Hanes, MD

When Wilburt C. Davison, MD, the founding dean of Duke University School of Medicine, was looking for a candidate to serve as the school’s inaugural chair of the Department of Medicine, the first name that came to mind was that of Frederic M. Hanes, MD.

An Investment in Excellence

C. Keith Ozaki, AB’84, MD’88, majored in political science as an undergraduate at Duke, but he soon found himself drawn toward the life sciences. “I felt like we were studying the real world, as opposed to the man-made world of politics and policy,” says Ozaki, the John A. Mannick Professor of Surgery and vice-chair of the Department of Surgery at Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School. “Pretty early on, I decided I wanted to explore science and medicine.”

Vietnam: Looking for Disease in a Global Hotspot

It’s an early November morning and third-year Duke medical students Amanda Farrell, MSIII, and Thao Nguyen, AB’16, MSIII, are walking through the massive, muddy, and malodorous Ha Vi live bird market near Hanoi, Vietnam, looking for potential disease.

They have come to the right place.


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About DukeMed Alumni News

DukeMed Alumni News is published twice a year. If you have a story idea, please write to us at the address below or send an e-mail to dukemed@dm.duke.edu. We are interested in remembrances of favorite faculty or stories about your time at the School of Medicine, as well as alumni who have interesting hobbies, alternative careers, global and community health experiences, and anything you think would be of interest to other Duke medical alumni. Letters to the editor are also welcome.

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